Frozen Shoulder: Intra-articular injection probably the best treatment

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Frozen shoulder: Intra-articular injection probably the best treatment

Frozen shoulder is a condition that consists of moderate to severe pain on shoulder movement, a restricted range of movement, and wakening at night. The other common source of shoulder pain is rotator cuff syndrome with some pain but usually a full range of motion. Both tend to be in older patients with rotator cuff syndrome being very uncommon in those under 40 years of age.

A review of treatments1 recommends using IA corticosteroid for patients with frozen shoulder of duration of less than one year because it appeared to have earlier benefits than other interventions and could last as long as six months.

A home exercise programme with simple ROM exercises and stretches may also be helpful. They note that frozen shoulder is a self-limiting condition that usually lasts for a few months but can take more than one year to resolve.


  1. Comparison of Treatments for Frozen Shoulder: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis  JAMA Netw Open (2020). View here

Gems are chosen by the Goodfellow director Dr. Bruce Arroll to be either practice changing or practice maintaining. The information is educational and not clinical advice.

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